Perspectives of Adolescents Receiving Psychiatric Treatment in Relation to Treatment Adherence: A Meta-synthesis
A meta-synthesis consisting of 10 research studies exploring the perspectives of adolescents receiving psychiatric treatment in relation to treatment adherence was conducted. Current literature indicates several factors contributing to partial or non-adherence to pharmacologic or non-pharmacologic treatment, as well as a need for further research to be conducted. Adolescents are a particularly vulnerable population to mental health conditions. Often symptoms of mental health conditions are present during childhood and adolescence, though they are not addressed until adulthood. Early intervention and prevention of the worsening of symptoms increases the likelihood of positive health outcomes. It is imperative that nursing staff understand the experience of this population in order to provide patient-centered care. Literature was thoroughly searched using the terms 'qualitative', 'adolescents', 'adherence', and 'psychiatric'. The following databases were used during the literature search: PubMed, PsycINFO, and CINAHL. Noblit and Hare’s 1988 comparative method of synthesizing qualitative studies guided the inquiry. Collectively, the 10 studies yielded a sample size of 415 participants. Overarching themes were generated to reflect the patient experience of adolescents receiving mental health care services. The themes identified were autonomy, ostrification, therapeutic intervention, and identity. The theme of autonomy related to the adolescents’ desire to control their care and treatment plan. In regards to ostrification, several adolescents reported feeling isolated during treatment. Therapeutic intervention related to the variety of factors that influenced an adolescent’s commitment to pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic treatment. Identity referred to adolescents’ struggle with self-concept after being diagnosed with a mental health condition. It is noted that variation was present throughout the studies identified to meet inclusionary criteria, and these variations were expressed within the findings.